Inland Marine Insurance – What you need to know

January 18, 2016

What is Inland Marine Insurance?

As a business owner, it could be you’ve never heard of Inland Marine insurance, or maybe you’ve dismissed it because of the name.  Well, you might want to think again. Inland Marine Insurance was first created to cover the transport of goods over water, but the definition of the term has expanded to refer to the coverage of goods in transit on land, as well as to the property of others that is at your premises or being transported to or from your premises. Depending on the type of business you operate, Inland Marine coverage could be key to protecting business property.

How to determine if your business needs Inland Marine Insurance.

  • Does your business transport property of any kind? Consider the equipment and inventory you and your employees transport in a vehicle or other mode of transportation during the day as part of your normal business operations.  That can range from tools and construction equipment to computer data to building plans and beyond.  Your commercial property insurance policy might not be enough to protect the value of the items needed for your business. Many commercial property policies limit coverage to within a certain number of feet from a designated business address. If your property policy includes such language, the policy would not cover equipment that is damaged at a job site or in transit outside of the coverage boundaries.
  • Does your business clean, service, or repair the property of others? Even while that property is on your premises, Inland Marine coverage can help save the day.
  • Does your business have property that’s moved from place to place on a regular basis?   Inland Marine coverage is crucial.

What is covered in Inland Marine Insurance?

  • This category of insurance includes property coverage for items such as construction equipment, medical diagnostic equipment, fine arts, solar panels and wind turbines, cameras and movie equipment, musical instruments, and a wide variety of other types of property.

The property that is insured under Inland Marine coverage is typically one of the following:

  • Actually in transit
  • Held by a bailee (An individual who temporarily gains possession, but not ownership, of a good or other property under a bailment.)
  • At a fixed location that is an instrument of transportation
  • A movable type of goods that is often at different locations

Other coverages to consider:

  • Cargo Insurance – Cargo insurance provides coverage against physical damage or loss of goods during shipping, whether by land, sea or air. Because of the many dangers inherent in shipping, most individuals and businesses choose to insure their goods while they are in transit. There are many different types of cargo insurance.  It is important that you know exactly what type of “in-transit” insurance you want or you may not be covered for every eventuality.
  • Ocean Cargo Insurance – Ocean cargo insurance provides coverage in the event of a marine loss to the ship’s cargo (freight) as the result of the occurrence of an insured peril. Perils insured against include collision of the ship with another ship or object; the ship sinking, capsizing, or being stranded; fire; piracy; jettisoning (throwing overboard of property to save other property); and barratry (fraud or other illegal act by a ship’s master or crew, resulting in damage or destruction of the ship or its cargo). To be covered, an act cannot involve prior knowledge by the owner of the ship or its cargo. Excluded are wear and tear, dampness, decay, mold, and war.
  • Warehouseman’s Legal Liability – This type of insurance protects the obligations of a storage facility toward its customers. Warehouse owners and operators can be held liable if the goods being stored in their warehouse are destroyed, damaged or stolen. Thus, warehouser’s liability insurance exists to protect owners and operators against the costs of legal defense, damage awards and other expenses related to a damage claim.

If you have questions regarding any of these coverages, contact The Armstrong Company Insurance Consultants and one of our experienced licensed representatives will provide you with the information you need. We are here to help you!

The Armstrong Company Insurance Consultants  (License #0440075)